Had the weirdest bus stop encounter just a moment ago. There were about four of us standing at the bus stop. One of the people had a cigarette but no lighter. He went to the first guy, and he didn't have one. He turned to me, and I shook my head. And the last guy had a lighter.
So he had his lit cigarette, and was walking back to the bench. But somehow my response didn't rub him the right way. So he walked up to me. His first line was "if I cut me, or I cut him, or I cut you -- we all bleed...?"
And I'm giving him a blank look while holding one of my earphones in my hand. I just shrug somewhat indifferently. But he goes on. Hitting a lot of topics. From "we're in this together" (I assume solidity in minority groups) to "I learned martial arts. I look like a thug but I'm not a banger." to "I come from both worlds. That thug world, and the world of money. I got money. I know." to "Do you know martial arts?"
I mostly looked at him blankly. Giving short answers. Like "No I don't know martial arts."
That's when he responds with "You know don't your people?!"
Now there's more back-and-forth. (Well, mostly forth than back.) But the weird thing was my main thought wasn't that he was crazy. But that the guy was actually pretty intelligent and astute. Sure, his opinions were packaged in a shouty-rambling way. But they were sorta like Jaden Smith tweets. Non sequitur, but there's a foundation there.
So I was being diffuse and withholding answers and conversation. Mostly deflecting when I could.
At some point, the bus rolled up. So he started walking back to the bench. And then suddenly he stops and turns. "You do know your people. You been playin'. You're playin' me."
In that moment, I was stunned. Like "Shit. You called it straight." And then I got on the bus, and went home.